Grass Gatherers of Asirgarh

Title: Grass Gatherers of Asirgarh

Description: There is a legend amongst the Grass Gatherers of Asirgarh that their ancestors have come across a very tall man in white clothes with a scar on his forehead asking for oil. Most of them have felt the presence of something they could not describe in words while they were cutting grass inside the fort. There are innumerable stories of a peculiar sound they have heard inside the Asirgarh Fort. Grass gatherers come inside the fort from the same secret passages that Ashwathama takes to enter the fort.

Source: digital photographs

Ascribed Date: 2019

Identifier/Keyword: Grass, gatherers, leaf, leaves, villagers, locals


Title: Grass Gatherers of Andrew Cussins

Description: Grass Gatherers in 21st century talk about a certain British photographer who must have met their ancestors around Asirgarh fort in search of Ashwathama. Since no particular dates are found written with these cyanotype prints it is assumed that these photographs must have been made between 1884-1886 like most of the other cyanotype prints of Andrew Cussins. Andrew Cussins must have made these two large-scale cyanotype prints of Grass Gatherers inside Asirgarh Fort.

Attributed to: Andrew Cussins

Source: Cyanotype print on cotton handmade paper

Ascribed date: 1884-1886

Dimensions: 34 in. x 29 in.

Identifier/Keyword: Ashwathama, grass, gatherers, leaf, leaves, ancestors, asirgarh, fort,


Title: Mama Bhanja Water Tank

Description: It is around here near the banks of these two small water bodies, locally called Mama-Bhanja Lake, inside the Asirgarh Fort that Grass Gatherers have felt the presence of another entity. Most of them talk about that feeling as Ashwathama emitting a certain type of radiance, some power that is difficult to put in words but felt very strongly around this water body. The Hindi word Grass Gatherers use is आभा ‘Aabha‘ – one of the meanings of this word is similar ‘Pure Aura’. Since the Grass Gatherers have grass on their heads, they have never seen Ashwathama. However, all of them have atleast once felt the ‘Aabha‘ during their time collecting grass from Asirgarh fort.

Source: Digital Photos

Ascribed Date: 2019

Identifier/Keywords: Asirgarh, fort, mama, bhanja, water, tank, body, aabha


Title: Golandaz Baba Tomb

Description: Grass Gatherers talk about this tomb of a Sufi saint, near the British Barracks. Their ancestors who had come to Asirgarh fort to collect grass on a certain full moon night had overheard a deep profound conversation between a Sufi saint called Golandaz Baba and Ashwathama. They say the sound of the conversation was audible but incomprehensible and mysterious. Many of the elders ran away in fear. They say the resonance of that sound is still sometimes heard till today.

Locals say that Ashwathama also pays homage to the tomb while in his journey through the labyrinthine Asirgarh Fort. There is not much written history about the Sufi Saint but from the ornamentation pattern on the tomb it seems to indicate that the tomb must have been constructed during the Mughal rule between 1600-1700’s.

Source: Digital Photos

Ascribed Date: 2019

Identifier/Keywords: Golandaz, baba, ashwathama,


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